May 6, 2015

Pentecost Countdown, Part 5

The Great Commission

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We have looked at the various times at which Yeshua (Jesus) revealed Himself to His apostles, but today as we continue our countdown to Pentecost, we want to look at what the church calls the Great Commission or our Great Commission.

After Yeshua had risen, the angel told the women that He would go ahead and meet them in Galilee. Matthew records in chapter 28:16-20, "And Yeshua came up and spoke to them saying, 'All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, immersing them in the name of the Father and Son and the Holy Spirit, teach them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.'" Matthew and Mark both end their Gospel with this story. We are going to look at this last major command given by Yeshua.

If you are not a pastor or priest or evangelist or missionary, you may wonder why this command should be of any interest to you, but it does have a lot to do with you. We all are disciples of Yeshua, and a disciple makes more disciples. Matthew records Yeshua's words in chapter 5:13-20, "You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how will it be made salty again?" Salt is used to preserve and to give taste. Our Messiah called us salt. His people are salt, not just His pastors or priests or evangelists or missionaries, but every one of us who belongs to Him is to be salt. We are to preserve life and we are to do just what salt does: make you thirsty. Paul tells us in Colossians 4:6, "Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned, as it were, with salt, so that you may know how you should respond to each person." Matthew continues, "You are the light of the world, A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under a bushel, but on a lampstand; and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven."

Yeshua tells us that we are light, for Yeshua, the Word made flesh, was the Light to the world, but now He has passed on that light to us. Psalm 119:105 tells us that it is the Word of God that is the light: "Thy word is a lamp to my feet, a light to my path." When we become believers, we now become that light. We are commanded by the Master Himself to "go out" and be salt and light to our family, friends, neighbors, and all that we meet. We are to cause people to want truth, to want the kingdom of our King Yeshua, if not by the preaching of the word, then by the example of our living it out. Paul tells us also in Colossians 4:5, "Conduct yourselves with wisdom (according to God's word) toward outsiders, making the most of every opportunity."

Yeshua tells us that if we love Him that we will keep His commands. The Church today tells us that all we need is to be baptized, which is only part of the commission to us. They tell us that this alone will be enough for salvation, but this is not correct. We are all light, we are all salt, and we all have been commissioned.

1 Peter 2:5 tells us, "You also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Yeshua the Messiah." Paul tells us in Ephesians 2:19-22, "So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God's household having been built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Messiah Yeshua Himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole building, being fitted together is growing into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit."

We are counting down to the day where we celebrate the outpouring of the Spirit upon man, and so the question today is are you part of the spiritual house of the Messiah, and if so, then are you that salt and light that you have been commanded to be? If not, then begin today by you yourself becoming a disciple, being built upon the whole Word of God; for Yeshua tells us in Matthew 5:17, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill."

Let us not be built upon anything other than the whole word of God. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 3:9-17 that no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Yeshua the Messiah; for Yeshua is the Rock (Matthew 7:24-27) and anyone who builds his house upon Him will withstand any storm in their lives. We have been commissioned, and when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, you shall have the power to do the work you have been called to do.

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